Gina's Italian Butter Cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 ¼ cups cake flour
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable shortening
  • 4 ounces almond paste
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • Directions

  • Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

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  • Step 2

    Combine cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.

  • Step 3

    Combine butter, sugar, and shortening in a large bowl; cream with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Mix in almond paste until thoroughly combined. Add eggs, vanilla extract, lemon juice, and almond extract. Reduce the mixing speed to low and slowly add dry ingredients. Scrape down the bowl once all dry ingredients are added, then mix on medium speed until evenly combined, about 30 seconds.

  • Step 4

    Fit a large pastry bag with an 864 or 4S tip and fill bag with batter. Pipe evenly sized cookies onto an ungreased cookie sheet 1 1/2 to 2 inches apart, giving cookies space to puff slightly during baking.

  • Step 5

    Bake in the preheated oven, in batches if necessary, until bottom edges are slightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • Cook's Note:

    You can use almond baker’s emulsion for almond extract, if desired.

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